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Warpaint at Santa Monica Pier's Twilight Concerts 8/17/17. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
Warpaint at Santa Monica Pier’s Twilight Concerts 8/17/17. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.

Santa Monica, CA- When Warpaint released their third studio album (“Heads  Up”) in late 2016, the buzz for them was already pretty intense. With the critical success of their sophomore album, fans were pretty antsy for more music. After spending about a year and half on the road routing in support of that album, and then each member taking some time off from the group to pursue other musical endeavors, “Heads Up” was released on September 23, 2016 and the group has been touring relentlessly in support of it.

“Heads Up” is a killer album. Heralded by critics as feeling “spontaneous and fearless“, I can vouch for the assessment. I’ll even add that it’s hypnotic and addicting; an album that utilizes all of the tricks of studio production to create a sound that gives a listen a certain atmosphere that both rich in musicality yet founded in a certain grounded in a real emotionally palpable depth.

From Jenny Lee Lindberg’s inspired bass playing, to Stella Mozgawa’s visceral drumming to the seductive yet angsty vocals Emily and Theresa … their music has the ability to cast a spell upon listeners, inducing dream like trances from anybody who may stop for a moment to pay attention their way.

Warpaint at Santa Monica Pier's Twilight Concerts 8/17/17. Setlist.That’s exactly what it was like at the Santa Monica Pier 8/17/17 when they headlined the evening’s Twilight Concerts. As a cool breeze drifted in from the Pacific Ocean, their music enveloped the audience with a sonic wash of the emotions and musicality that I mentioned before.

I had seen Warpaint perform live once before, and as much as I enjoyed that last performance, this showing felt so much more powerful and cohesive. Maybe it’s because they’ve had about a year to play the music from their most recent album together on stage, maybe it’s because Emily and Theresa were in closer proximity to each on this this time around, maybe it’s because their fans have had a year to memorize lyrics so that they could sing along in unison during the performance … whatever the reason, the energy that Warpaint exuded that evening was pretty damn impressive.

Warpaint has clearly hit their stride, and with a supporting slot opening for the legendary band Depeche Mode this fall, I can only imagine that their stride will only get larger.

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